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Which our endeavours have refused to till,
mentations over misdirected applause. Instance of And hope hath never water'd. The abode,
exalted excellence in a deaf man. Elevated char Whose grateful owner can attest these truths,
of a blind man. Reflection upon blindness. Intera E’en were the object nearer to our sight,
ed by a peasant who passes; his animal cheerful
and careless vivacity. He occasions a digres Would seem in no distinction to surpass
the fall of beautiful and interesting trees. A fena The rudest habitations. Ye might think
infant's grave. Joy at her birth. Sorrow at her depe That it had sprung self-raised from earth, or grown ure. A youthful peasant; his patriotic enthusiasm. Out of the living rock, to be adorn'd
linguished qualities, and untimely death. Exulu By nature only; but, if thither led,
of the wanderer, as a patriot, in this picture. Sotes
how affected. Monument of a knight Trade Ye would discover, then, a studious work
concerning him. Peroration of the wanderer et Of many fancies, prompting many hands.
transitoriness of things, and the revolutions of sciss Brought from the woods, the honeysuckle twines Hints at his own past calling. Thanks the pasa Around the porch, and seems, in that trim place, A plant no longer wild: the cultured rose
While thus from theme to theme the historias There blossoms, strong in health, and will be soon pass'd, Roof high; the wild pink crowns the garden wall, The words he utter'd, and the scene that lay And with the flowers are intermingled stones Before our eyes, awaken'd in my mind Sparry and bright, rough scatterings of the hills. Vivid remembrance of those long-past hours, These ornaments, that fade not with the year, When, in the hollow of some shadowy vale, A hardy girl continues to provide ;
(What time the splendour of the setting sun
A wandering youth, I listen’d with delight
Drawn from the chords of th' ancient British barp
Amid the quiet of the green recess,
Tender or blithe; now, as the varying mood A not unfrequent pastime from the sight
Of his own spirit urged, -now, as a voice
Which overflow'd the soul was pass'd away,
Deposited upon the silent shore
Of memory, images and precious thoughts, The never-halting time; or, in her turn,
That shall not die, and cannot be destroy'd. Teaching some novice of the sisterhood
“ These grassy heaps lie amicably close,” That skill in this or other household work, Said I,“ like surges heaving in the wind Which, from her father's honour'd hand, herself Upon the surface of a mountain pool; While she was yet a little one, had learn'd. Whence comes it then, that yonder we behold Mild man! he is not gay, but they are gay ; Five graves, and only five, that rise together And the whole house seems fill'd with gayety. Unsociably sequester'd, and encroaching Thrice happy, then, the mother may be deem'd, On the smooth playground of the village school ?" The wife, from whose consolatory grave
The vicar answered : “ No disdainful pride I turn'd, that ye in mind might witness where In them who rest beneath, nor any course And how, her spirit yet survives on earth.” Of strange or tragic accident, hath help'd
To place those hillocks in that lonely guise.
Once more look forth, and follow with your sight BOOK VII.
The length of road that from yon mountain's base
Through bare enclosures stretches, till its line THE CHURCHYARD AMONG THE MOUNTAINS. Is lost within a little tust of trees; CONTINUED.
Then reappearing in a moment, quits
The cultured fields, and up the heathy waste,
Mounts, as you see, in mazes serpentine,
That little shady spot, that sylvan tuft,
(Ye scarcely can) amid its sheltering trees To cheat the sadness of a rainy day;
A generous spirit, and a body strong (For such in truth it is, and appertains
To cope with stoutest champions of the bowl; To a small chapel in the vale beyond)
Had earn’d for him sure welcome, and the rights When hither came its last inhabitant.
Of a prized visitant, in the jolly hall “ Rough and forbidding were the choicest roads Of country squire; or at the statelier board By which our northern wilds could then be cross'd; of duke or earl, frem scenes of courtly pomp And into most of these secluded vales
Withdrawn, to while away the suminer hours Was no access for wain, heavy or light.
In condescension among rural guests. So, at his dwelling-place the priest arrived,
“ With these high comrades he had reveli'd long,
Till the heart sicken'd. So each loftier aim
For a life's stay, though slender yet assured,
He turn’d to this secluded chapelry,
They found the cottage, their allotted home; Two ruddy children hung, a well-poised freight, Naked without, and rude within ; a spot Each in his basket nodding drowsily;
With which the scantily provided cure Their bonnets, I remember, wreathed with flowers, Not long had been endowed: and far remote Which told it was the pleasant month of June; The chapel stood, divided from that house And, close behind, the comely matron rode, By an unpeopled tract of mountain waste. A woman of soft speech and gracious smile, Yet cause was none, whate'er regret might hang And with a lady's mien. From far they came, On his own mind, to quarrel with the choice E'en from Northumbrian hills; yet theirs had been Or the necessity that tix'd him here: A merry journey, rich in pastime, cheer'd
Apart from old temptations, and constrain’d By music, prank, and laughter-stirring jest; To punctual labour in his sacred charge. And freak put on, and arch word dropp'd, to swell See him a constant preacher to the poor ! The cloud of fancy and uncouth surmise
And visiting, though not with saintly zeal, That gather'd round the slowly-moving train. Yet when need was, with no reluctant will, • Whence do they come? and with what errand The sick in body, or distrest in mind; charged ?
And, by his salutary change, compeli'd Belong they to the fortune-telling tribe
To rise from timely sleep, and meet the day Who pitch their tents beneath the green-wood tree? With no engagement, in his thoughts, more proud Or are they strollers, furnish'd to enact
Or splendid than his garden could afford, Fair Rosamond, and the Children of the Wood, His fields, or mountains by the heath-cock ranged, And, by that whisker'd tabby's aid, set forth Or the wild brooks; from which he now return'd The lucky venture of sage Whittington,
Contented to partake the quiet meal When the next village hears the show announced Of his own board, where sate his gentle mate By blast of trumpet ?' Plenteous was the growth And three fair children, plentifully fed Of such conjectures, overheard, or seen
Though simply, from their little household farm; On many a staring countenance portray'd
With acceptable treat of fish or fow]
Of that spare benefice. Yet not the less
A charitable door. So days and years From some staid guardian of the public peace, Pass'd on; the inside of that rugged house Checking the sober steed on which he rode, Was trimm'd and brightend by the matron's care, In his suspicious wisdom: oftener still,
And gradually enrich'd with things of price, By notice indirect, or blunt demand
Which might be lack'd for use or ornament. From traveller halting in his own despite,
What though no soft and costly sofa there A simple curiosity to ease;
Insidiously stretch'd out its lazy length, Of which adventures, that beguiled and cheer'd And no vain mirror glitter'd on the walls, Their grave migration, the good pair would tell, Yet were the windows of the low abode With undiminish'd glee, in hoary age.
By shutters weather-fended, which at once “ A priest he was by function; but his course Repell’d the storm and deadend its loud roar. From his youth up, and high as manhood's noon, There snow-white curtains hung in decent folds; (The hour of life to which he then was brought,) Tough moss, and long-enduring mountain plants, Had been irregular, I might say, wild;
That creep along the ground with sinuous trail, By books unsteadied, by his pastoral care
Were nicely braided, and composed a work Too little checkd. An active, ardent mind; Like Indian mats, that with appropriate grace A fancy pregnant with resource and scheme Lay at the threshold and the inner doors;
And a fair carpet, woven of homespun wool, And the lone privileged house left empty-swept But tinctured daintily with florid hues,
As by a plague: yet no rapacious plague For seemliness and warmth, on festal days, Had been among them; all was gentle death, Cover'd the smooth blue slabs of mountain stone One after one, with intervals of peace. With which the parlour floor, in simplest guise A happy consummation ! an accord Of pastoral homesteads, had been long inlaid. Sweet, perfect-to be wish'd for! save that here These pleasing works the housewife's skill pro- Was something which to mortal sense might sound duced :
Like harshness,—that the old gray-headed sire, Meanwhile the unsedentary master's hand
The oldest, he was taken last,-survived Was busier with his task-to rid, to plant,
When the meek partner of his age, his son, To rear for food, for shelter, and delight;
His daughter, and that late and high-prized gift, A thriving covert! And when wishes, form'd His little smiling grandchild, were no more. In youth, and sanction’d by the riper mind,
“ • All gone, all vanish'd! he deprived and bare, Restored me to my native valley, here
How will he face the remnant of his life? To end my days; well pleased was I to see What will become of him?' we said, and mused The once bare cottage, on the mountain side, In sad conjectures—- Shall we meet him now Screen'd from assault of every bitter blast; Haunting with rod and line the craggy brooks? While the dark shadows of the summer leaves Or shall we overhear him, as we pass, Danced in the breeze, upon its mossy roof. Striving to entertain the lonely hours Time, which had thus afforded willing help With music ?'(for he had not ceased to touch To beautify with nature's fairest growth
The harp or viol which himself had framed, This rustic tenement, had gently shed,
For their sweet purposes, with perfect skill.) Upon its master's frame, a wintry grace ;
• What titles will he keep? will he remain The comeliness of unenfeebled age.
Musician, gardener, builder, mechanist, But how could I say, gently? for he still
A planter, and a rearer from the seed?
A man of hope and forward looking mind
But Heaven was gracious : yet a little while,
Of open schemes, and all his inward hoard
Was overcome by unexpected sleep,
For noontide solace on the summer grass,
The warm lap of his mother earth : and so, In bitterness, and with a threatening eye
Their lenient term of separation past,
That family (whose graves you there behold)
Calm of mind
Until the wanderer (whether moved by fear To that still region whither all are bound. Lest in those passages of life were some Him might we liken to the setting sun
That might have touch'd the sick heart of his friend As seen not seldom on some gusty day,
Too nearly, or intent to reinforce Struggling and bold, and shining from the west His own firm spirit in degree deprest With an inconstant and unmellow'd light; By tender sorrow for our mortal state) She was a soft attendant cloud, that hung
Thus silence broke: “ Behold a thoughtless man As if with wish to veil the restless orb;
From vice and premature decay preserved From which it did itself imbibe a ray
By useful habits, to a fitter soil Of pleasing lustre. But no more of this ;
Transplanted ere too late. The hermit, lodged I better love to sprinkle on the sod
In the untrodden desert, tells his beads,
With each repeating its allotted prayer,
Smooth task, with his compared, whose mind could “ Our very first in eminence of years
A keen domestic anguish,--and beguile
And what to higher powers is justly due.
it you, sir, know that in a neighbouring vale Hamlet, and town; and piety survive
And grave encouragement, by song inspired. f reason, honourably effaced by debts
Vain thought! but wherefore murmur or repine ? hich her poor treasure house is content to owe, The memory of the just survives in heaven : nd conquest over her dominion gain’d,
And, without sorrow, will this ground receive 'o which her frowardness must needs submit.
That venerable clay. Meanwhile the best 1 this one man is shown a temperance-proof Of what it holds confines us to degrees gainst all trials; industry severe
In excellence less difficult to reach, and constant as the motion of the day ;
And milder worth: nor need we travel far tern self-denial round him spread, with shade From those to whom our last regards were paid, Chat might be deem'd forbidding, did not there For such example. 111 generous feelings flourish and rejoice;
Almost at the root forbearance, charity in deed and thought,
Of that tall pine, the shadow of whose bare And resolution competent to take
And slender stem, while here I sit at eve, Out of the bosom of simplicity
Oft stretches towards me, like a long straight path All that her holy customs recommend,
Traced faintly in the greensward ; there, beneath And the best ages of the world prescribe.
A plain blue stone, a gentle dalesman lies, Preaching, administering, in every work
From whom, in early childhood, was withdrawn Of his sublime vocation, in the walks
The precious gift of hearing. He grew up Of worldly intercourse 'twixt man and man, From year to year in loneliness of soul; And in his humble dwelling, he appears
And this deep mountain valley was to him A labourer, with moral virtue girt,
Soundless, with all its streams. The bird of dawn With spiritual graces, like a glory, crown’d.” Did never rouse this cottager from sleep
“ Doubt can be none," the pastor said, “ for whom with startling summons: not for his delight This portraiture is sketch'd. The great, the good, The vernal cuckoo shouted; not for him The well beloved, the fortunate, the wise,
Murmur'd the labouring bee. When stormy winds These titles emperors and chiefs have borne, Were working the broad bosom of the lake Honour assumed or given: and him, the Wonderful, Into a thousand thousand sparkling waves, Our simple shepherds, speaking from the heart, Rocking the trees, or driving cloud on cloud Deservedly have styled. From his abode
Along the sharp edge of yon lofty crags, In a dependent chapelry, that lies
The agitated scene before his eye Behind yon hill, a poor and rugged wild,
Was sijent as a picture : evermore Which in his soul he lovingly embraced, Were all things silent, wheresoe'er he moved. And, having once espoused, would never quit; Yet, by the solace of his own pure thoughts Hither, ere long, that lowly, great, good man Upheld, he duteously pursued the round Will be convey'd. An unelaborate stone
Of rural labours ; the steep mountain side May cover him; and by its help, perchance, Ascended with his staff and faithful dog ; A century shall hear his name pronounced, The plough he guided, and the scythe he sway'd; With images attendant on the sound:
And the ripe corn before his sickle fell Then, shall the slowly gathering twilight close Among the jocund reapers. For himself, In utter night; and of his course remain
All watchful and industrious as he was, No cognizable vestiges, no more
He wrought not; neither field nor flock he own'd: Than of this breath, which shapes itself in words No wish for wealth had place within his mind; To speak of him, and instantly dissolves.
Nor husband's love, nor father's hope or care. Noise is there not enough in doleful war,
Though born a younger brother, need was none But that the heaven-born poet must stand forth, That from the floor of his paternal home And lend the echoes of his sacred shell,
He should depart, to plant himself anew. To multiply and aggravate the din?
And when, mature in manhood, he beheld Pangs are there not enough in hopeless love- His parents laid in earth, no loss ensued And, in requited passion, all too much
Of rights to him ; but he remain'd well pleased, Of turbulence, anxiety, and fear
By the pure bond of independent love But that the minstrel of the rural shade 1
An inmate of a second family, Must tune his pipe, insiduously to nurse
The fellow labourer and friend of him The perturbation in the suffering breast,
To whom the small inheritance had fall’n. And propagate its kind, far as he may ?
Nor deem that his mild presence was a weight Ah who (and with such rapture as befits
That press'd upon his brother's house, for books The hallow'd theme) will rise and celebrate Were ready comrades whom he could not tire,The good man's deeds and purposes ; retrace Of whose society the blameless man His struggles, his discomfiture deplore,
Was never satiate. Their familiar voice, His triumphs hail, and glorify his end ?
E'en to old age, with unabated charm That virtue, like the fumes and vapory clouds Beguiled his leisure hours; refresh'd his thoughts ; Through fancy's heat redounding in the brain, Beyond its natural elevation raised And like the soft infections of the heart,
His introverted spirit: and bestow'd By charm of measured words may spread o'er field, Upon his life an outward dignity
Which all acknowledged. The dark winter night, With eloquence, and such authentic power,
Abash'd, and tender pity overawed.”
“A noble, and, to unreflecting minds, Announcing immortality and joy
A marvellous spectacle,” the wanderer said, To the assembled spirits of the just,
“ Beings like these present! But proof abounds From imperfection and decay secure.
Upon the earth that faculties which seem
And to the mind among her powers of sense
But for remoter purposes of love
“At length, when sixty years and five were told, How, likewise, under sufferance divine, A slow disease insensibly consumed
Darkness is banish'd from the realms of death, The powers of nature; and a few short steps By man's imperishable spirit quell'd. Of friends and kindred bore him from his home Unto the men who see not as we see, (Yon cottage shaded by the woody crags)
Futurity was thought, in ancient times, To the profounder stillness of the grave.
To be laid open, and they prophesied. Nor was his funeral denied the grace
And know we not that from the blind have flow'd Of many tears, virtuous and thoughtful grief; The highest, holiest raptures of the lyre ; Heart sorrow rendered sweet by gratitude. And wisdom married to immortal verse ?" And now that monumental stone preserves
Among the humbler worthies, at our feet His name, and unambitiously relates
Living insensible to human praise, How long, and by what kindly outward aids, Love, or regret, whose lineaments would next And in what pure contentedness of mind, Have been portray'd, I guess not; but it chanced The sad privation was by him endured.
That, near the quiet churchyard where we sate, And yon tall pine tree, whose composing sound A team of horses, with a ponderous freight Was wasted on the good man's living ear, Pressing behind, adown a rugged slope, Hath now its own peculiar sanctity ;
Whose sharp descent confounded their array And, at the touch of every wandering breeze, Came at that moment, ringing noisily. Murmurs, not idly, o'er his peaceful grave.
Here," said the pastor, “ do we muse, and “ Soul-cheering light, most bountiful of things! mourn Guide of our way, mysterious comforter ! The waste of death: and lo! the giant oak Whose sacred influence, spread through earth and Stretch'd on his bier, that massy timber wain; heaven,
Nor fail to note the man who guides the team.” We all too thanklessly participate,
He was a peasant of the lowest class :
Within his cheek, as light within a cloud;
And he returned our greeting with a smile. What terror doth it strike into the mind
When he had pass'd, the solitary spake : To think of one who cannot see, advancing “ A man he seems of cheerful yesterdays Toward some precipice's airy brink !
And confident to-morrows; with a face But, timely warnd, he would have stay'd his steps, Not worldly-minded, for it bears too much Protected, say enlighten'd, by his ear,
Of nature's impress-gayety and health, And on the very edge of vacancy
Freedom and hope ; but keen withal, and shrewd. Not more endanger'd than a man whose eye His gestures note; and hark! his tones of voice Beholds the gulf beneath. No floweret blooms Are all vivacious as his mien and looks." Throughout the lofty range of these rough hills, The pastor answered: “You have read him well. Or in the woods, that could from him conceal Year after year is added to bis store Its birthplace; none whose figure did not live With silent increase ; summers, winters-past, Upon his touch. The bowels of the earth Past or to come; yea, boldly might I say, Enrich'd with knowledge his industrious mind; Ten summers and ten winters of a space The ocean paid him tribute from the stores That lies beyond life's ordinary bounds, Lodged in her bosom ; and, by science led, Upon his sprightly vigour cannot fix His genius mounted to the plains of heaven. The obligation of an anxious mind, Methinks I see him ; how his eyeballs roll’d A pride in having, or a fear to lose ; Beneath his ample brow, in darkness pair’d, Possess'd like outskirts of some large domain, But each instinct with spirit; and the frame By any one more thought of than by him Of the whole countenance alive with thought, Who holds the land in fee, its careless lord ! Fancy, and understanding; while the voice Yet is the creature rational, endow'd Discoursed of natural or moral truth
With foresight; hears, too, every Sabbath-day,